April 16, 2004 at 5:18 pm #24550
I was curious at the rate it appears the parent comnpany of sierra is going, do you feel the company will be around in 10 years?. I had also wanted to know if you had a chance to view the trailer of LSL and if you did what do you think of the game ? Do you think it has a poential to be successful from what you seen ? I have seen they dramrically changed the look of larry and as a fan of LSL it has me concered that the game may do well .
Thank you for your time Ken if you can answer this
April 16, 2004 at 5:49 pm #24551
(re: sierra’s future ) I was curious at the rate it appears the parent comnpany of sierra is going, do you feel the company will be around in 10 years?. I had also wanted to know if you had a chance to view the trailer of LSL and if you did what do you think of the game ? Do you think it has a poential to be successful from what you seen ? I have seen they dramrically changed the look of larry and as a fan of LSL it has me concered that the game may do well .
Thank you for your time Ken if you can answer this
I think it’s arguable that Sierra is already gone… at least in the sense I think of a company. It’s tough for me to believe that Sierra has any employees. No one has identified themselves on this site for several years as a Sierra employee. I doubt there is a Sierra President, or a big-picture Sierra philosophy. I doubt Sierra files a tax return. I doubt there’s even a Sierra coffee pot anywhere. My guess is that Sierra has become not much more than a name that you put on a box.
That said, I have no way of knowing if this is true. Sierra may have a million employees. It has been many years since I spoke with anyone at Sierra (and, in fact I doubt there is anyone there to talk with). Hopefully, someday someone will call and say “Hi. I’m Sierra’s President, can we have lunch?” I’m just not expecting that call to come…
And, that said…
I am trying to think about how to refocus this board in a more positive direction. It seems that the site (or, at least me) is caught in a loop. We talk about how cool Sierra was a decade ago, and then I whine about how they’ve screwed it up, and then the process repeats. It’s not bad to be nostalgic — but, I’m hoping there’s more to this site than just that. Also, I hate whiners and fear I am in danger of becoming one. Whiners don’t make great things happen. It’s better to focus on where you’re going, not where you’ve been.
My hope for this site was to capture the industry’s history, Sierra’s history, AND, to become a hub for people to talk about fun stuff that is computer or game related. To some extent, we have done that — if you read through the messages, there is a LOT of great Sierra history here.
However, I’ve dropped the ball on getting bigger-picture industry history here. I’m overloaded now, so that will have to wait until later — but, over the next year, I want to try to capture more stories here about “the old days” – that weren’t necessarily Sierra related.
And, on a topic that is much more fun: I want to think of something fun to do that is part of this site. I don’t know exactly what that means. My first thought is that it would be fun for all of us to build a game together. How I’ll accomplish that, I don’t know. It may be impossible — or, it may be more work than I want to do. We’ll see. Step one is to set the goal, and step two is to decide if the goal is achievable. Step three, which I hope we get to is to actually do something.
I’ve got some ideas in this area. I’ll be stuck at sea for the next couple of months. I’ll make it my project to try to come up with some realistic ideas. Don’t expect greatness though. Modern computer games cost millions to develop. I’m thinking of something more along the lines of a budget that would compare to lunch at McDonalds.
Anyway … trying to do something fun, whether we succeed or fail, beats the heck out of me continuing to focus on Sierra. Been there, done that.
April 16, 2004 at 8:55 pm #24552
(re: sierra’s future ) I like the idea of creating something 🙂
I don’t post much here really as I don’t have much to say but I try and vist a few times a week to see if anyone has posted anything of interest. I too am quite ‘bored’ of reading the same old statement with regards to Sierra. Please do not be offended, but reading the 100th post saying how Sierra taught you English and how dissapointed you are at how they don’t do what they used to do is old news. Sierra the name lives on but the company we once admired changed dramatically when Ken left the helm.
Also, the games industry changed incredibly quickly over those years and the results are for all to see – generally not enough creativity, not enough ‘real’ competition, lots of me-too’s and [seemingly] apathy for the customers! This is not just leveled at the company named Sierra, but mostly all the publishers who lack, or don’t fully promote/exploit, inhouse development teams.
April 16, 2004 at 10:12 pm #24553
(re: sierra’s future ) You know Ken maybe we could all build a game together I am sure everybody has an idea of what kind of game they want you could post a board for game ideas then you could ask programmers to write a program based on those ideas and see what you get. with email and everything else I think it is possible to get anybody who wanted to to create a game.
I think it could be done
April 17, 2004 at 8:51 am #24554
(re: re: sierra’s future )
I am finally starting to ‘feel’ what you are saying. I too am starting to get tired of dwelling on the Sierra “of old”. It’s getting all the more obvious day to day that the only chance of Sierra coming back is for the owning company to die (and who knows what else) and for us (all of us) to buy back the name and logo that “you know who” is simply stamping on boxes as they please.
And of course the logostics and odds of that are insane…
Maybe we should put away the rusty sword and forge a new one.
I think we could make a game. Easily. Yes that sounds nuts. But soon I will make an attempt to answer all our wants, to break the trend of mindless games, yes, they sell, and yes, I have played and bought many of these (who doesn’t enjoy a good game of Battlefield:Vietnam 🙂
Thusly I think this site you have created has already done ALOT of the research work. If we were to look back at all the posts, it would show a good deal of what we and you would like to see in a game… Something new, something exciting.. Just like the original KQ was to us.
Memory is a flicker of light, left behind in the heartland.
Let all this hope for Sierra, etc, be the starting point, not the resting point.
Anyways, good luck on your boat trip Ken, keep the fire alive and I’m sure some good ol’ brainstorming will be fun!
April 17, 2004 at 2:33 pm #24555
(re: re: re: sierra’s future ) Making a game together would be awesome, and I happen to know it’s doable.
That’s a message board I hang out at. The main premise of the board, other than the usual message board chit chat, is making games together. It works extremely well: people make art of whatever the game needs, and they submit it, and they also submit music, sounds, ideas, whatever. The result is some games which are arguably as fun as any commercial games.
Ken, if you are going to go with the game making idea, i STRONGLY suggest you at least check that site out for ideas, if not outright list whatever game we’d be making there.
April 19, 2004 at 9:38 am #24556
(re: re: sierra’s future )
hey ken. the idea of a community game with all of us sounds great. i would be willing to help as much as i could. i am a computer science major and have some experience in directx, both ddraw and d3d. if you do decide to do something from scratch and not use an engine already out there, i would love to contribute. im sure im not the only programmer here either. i think we could get something together. great idea!
April 21, 2004 at 8:52 am #24557
(re: sierra’s future )
I think that building a computer game together would be great! I am not very good with many things but I can give ideas.
This would be so much fun!
April 22, 2004 at 4:21 pm #24558
(re: re: sierra’s future )
I think you can count on a lot of us, including me, for help on the game idea in Ken. It’ll be fun. If it’s a limited budget, why not brush again AGI ? Whatever, count me in if you start (also for brainstorming).
April 28, 2004 at 2:48 pm #24559
(re: sierra’s future ) Look, here I am butting my head in again…
I don’t know why a lot of people are here, but I’d imagine at least a few of them are here for the same reason I am – I have incredible memories as a kid (I’m 25 now) of playing and experiencing Sierra games. I don’t remember finishing any of them, and knowing my attention span I probably didn’t, but I remember how incredible it was to play the games, and how they felt like worlds of their own, as opposed to Ms. Pac Man munching little balls and ghosts around the same screen, over and over. These games were MAGIC to a lot of us, and you were the man behind the curtain, at the end of the yellowbrick road.This is why it’s still fascinating for me to come here and chat with you.
I’ve know a few moderately famous people in my time, all in the music business, and I’ve never met anyone who has taken as much time as you have to respond to fan requests, questions, etc. To make it even more remarkable is that you aren’t really famous as much as you are a legend – in 50 or 100 years when college classes are taught by historians on interactive gaming, Ken and Roberta Williams will be there alongside Nolen Bushnell, Shigeru Miyamoto, and other pioneers. So it goes from remarkable to mind blowing.
I believe, based on viewing a lot of these boards, that the discussion seems redundant due mostly to newbies. Although it’s extremely polite, you don’t have to respond to the same stupid questions (“Do you regret selling Sierra?”) over and over. Have one of your admins create a few good FAQs answering these questions, and then allow the Sierra discussions to continue in positive directions. Don’t censor discussions, but only respond to negative questions and discussions if they are original or haven’t been addressed before. But please continue to participate in the nostalgia discussions. Otherwise this site might lose some of it’s magic, and there is a ton of magic floating around right now!
Thanks again for everything, and have fun on your trip!
April 28, 2004 at 3:02 pm #24560
(re: sierra’s future) Thank you for the kind words….
I have been speaking with Brad and Brandon (the site admins) about putting up a FAQ for newbies, and it’s definitely our intent to do so.
In a way, it isn’t that bad answering the same questions over and over .. when I’m lazy I just post a link to a prior message, but usually I answer the question again. It’s fun to see if I remember the same things, the same way on different days.
There are some topics, where if I had stopped after my first answer, the full story wouldn’t have come out.
Anyway…. we’re all thinking the same thought – we need a FAQ with answers to the common questions. Keep watching… it will appear in the next month or two. The tricky part is that we decided to put in links to the original messages, rather than just capturing my comments. It’s more interesting when you see the full discussion.